After a shocking loss to Texas in the Red River Showdown, the Oklahoma Sooners have responded as you might expect, winning their next two games by a combined 118-27. Oklahoma blanked Kansas State on the road, 55-0, before beating Texas Tech, 63-27.
“Yeah, that’s what you hope for,” Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops said on CBS Sports Radio’s The Doug Gottlieb Show. “And really, this team has done an excellent job of just trying to improve – really going to practice every day with a purpose, competing against each other at practice to make ourselves better. And then fortunately, we’ve gone to Manhattan, Kansas, and played a really good game and then here at home against Texas Tech last week, kept it going a little bit.”
Oklahoma was dominant in the trenches against Texas Tech, rushing 57 times for 405 yards and seven touchdowns. Samaje Perine and Joe Mixon rushed for 201 yards and 154 yards, respectively, and combined for six touchdowns.
“We were successful early running the ball and kept going to it,” Stoops said. “Why change it if it’s working so well? So it just happened. The execution and the offensive line and with their fullback, Dimitri Flowers, and the two strong big backs – just all of them working together was really working from the beginning. So we just kind of rode that along with some play-action passes to really a lot of success offensively.”
Oklahoma (6-1), ranked 14th in the AP Poll, still has a legitimate shot at the College Football Playoff. The Sooners have already beaten two ranked teams and face No. 2 Baylor, No. 5 TCU and No. 12 Oklahoma State in the final three weeks of the season.
That’s the beauty of the playoff era: virtually every team gets a mulligan.
“Even through the BCS formula when there were only two teams they would pick, there were multiple teams with one loss that had opportunities and won,” Stoops pointed out. “Heck, I think LSU even won it one year and they were a two-loss team. So now that they’re picking four as opposed to two, I don’t see where it’d be much different. In fact, your opportunities are probably even better in today’s game than they were when it was the BCS formula.”
Oklahoma just needs to make sure that what happened against Texas doesn’t happen again the rest of the season. The Sooners rushed 37 times for just 67 yards (1.7 yards per carry) that day.
“Well, you got to give Texas the credit defensively,” Stoops said. “We weren’t able to run the football consistently at all. We were in too many third-and-longs and we weren’t able to convert. Defensively we had a poor tackling day, (whereas) other games we haven’t. Once they got the lead, they were able to play with it.”
The Sooners figure to play with a lead early and often this weekend at Kansas (0-7). Kickoff is at 3:30 p.m. ET.